You can BET that this is Campy

I chose “Bet On It,” a musical number from High School Musical 2, as my example of Camp aesthetics. As Sontag articulates, “in naive, or pure, Camp, the essential element is seriousness, a seriousness that fails.” As Zac Efron leaps and struts his way across the serene golf course landscape, he seems to radiate failed seriousness. Furthermore, his performance “has the proper mixture of the exaggerated, the fantastic, the passionate, and the naive.” One of my favorite moments, and arguably the most Campy moment of the entire scene, occurs at 2:30 when Efron sings to his unnaturally flawless reflection in the pond. Overall, I think “Bet On It” reflects Sontag’s closing statement: “it’s good because it’s awful.” “Bet On It” has every intention of being emotional, believable, and sincere, but it is simply “too much.” Personally, I can’t help but enjoy Efron’s over-the-top performance.

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